Applications are invited for two Collaborative Doctoral Award studentships, available under the rubric Reconnecting Sloane: Texts, Images, Objects, to commence in Autumn 2012. The first CDA will be at King’s College London/The British Library and will focus on the correspondence (i.e. ‘texts’) of Sir Hans Sloane. The second will be at Queen Mary University London/The Natural History Museum and will focus on Sloane’s vegetable substances (i.e. ‘objects’). A third has already been awarded and will be at King’s College London/The British Museum and will focus on Sloane’s natural history drawings (i.e. ‘images’).
Together the CDAs will explore and develop our current understanding of Sloane and his contribution to eighteenth-century intellectual life through his activities as a physician, collector, natural philosopher and man of letters. The Research Programme aims to examine the role of a major early Enlightenment collection, and its collector, in the making of knowledge about nature. Sir Hans Sloane’s (1660-1753) extensive collection of texts (in print and manuscript), images (paintings, drawings and prints) and objects (including specimens and herbaria) formed the founding collection of the British Museum (BM) in 1753, but was subsequently dispersed, primarily to the British Library (BL) and the Natural History Museum (NHM). For Sloane and his contemporaries, the collection would have been understood as a whole, and its uses would have involved working between texts, images and objects. The programme’s three linked studentships – each of which will be conducted with the partner organization that now holds the part of Sloane’s collection that will be studied – will aim to ‘Reconnect Sloane’ by examining the making and use of this collection in terms of the specific material within it – texts, images and objects – and also the connections between materials. Working across the separate collections in the way this will provide new insight into Sloane’s role in the making of natural knowledge.
The deadline for applications is 29th June, and you must be available for interview on 19th July. For more information on how to apply, please see the attached documents included below. Please note, the AHRC has strict residential eligibility criteria governing the students that can be nominated for this award. If you are not a British citizen and/or not usually resident in the UK (and have not been for the past three years), please check your eligibility and discuss this with the project supervisors so that your eligibility can be determined.